Responsive core-shell latex particles as colloidosome microcapsule membranes

Qingchun Yuan*, Olivier J. Cayre, Syuji Fujii, Steven P. Armes, Richard A. Williams, Simon Biggs

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


Responsive core-shell latex particles are used to prepare colloidosome microcapsules using thermal annealing and internal cross linking of the shell, allowing the production of the microcapsules at high concentrations. The core-shell particles are composed of a polystyrene core and a shell of poly[2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate]-b-poly[methyl methacrylate] (PDMA-b-PMMA) chains adsorbed onto the core surface, providing steric stabilization. The PDMA component of the adsorbed polymer shell confers thermally responsive and pH-responsive characteristics to the latex particle, and it also provides glass transitions at temperatures lower than those of the core and reactive amine groups. These features facilitate the formation of stable Pickering emulsion droplets and the immobilization of the latex particle monolayer on these droplets to form colloidosome microcapsules. The immobilization is achieved through thermal annealing or cross linking of the shell under mild conditions feasible for large-scale economic production. We demonstrate here that it is possible to anneal the particle monolayer on the emulsion drop surface at 75-86°C by using the lower glass-transition temperature of the shell compared to that of the polystyrene cores (∼ 108°C). The colloidosome microcapsules that are formed have a rigid membrane basically composed of a densely packed monolayer of particles. Chemical cross linking has also been successfully achieved by confining a cross linker within the disperse droplet. This approach leads to the formation of single-layered stimulus-responsive soft colloidosome membranes and provides the advantage of working at very high emulsion concentrations because interdroplet cross linking is thus avoided. The porosity and mechanical strength of the microcapsules are also discussed here in terms of the observed structure of the latex particle monolayers forming the capsule membrane.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18408-18414
Number of pages7
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrochemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • General Materials Science
  • Spectroscopy


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